Some people think that the older classic “bombs” are the ultimate rides in the sport of lowriding. Most young guys just getting into lowriding start off with something relatively more accessible like a ’70s or ’80s Olds Cutlass or Buick Regal, before acquiring the “holy grail” of the sport, an early ’60s Chevy Impala. But once you’ve been there and done that, where can you go to next? For many of the veteranos into the scene, the answer is to go all of the way back to the days of straight-six engines, fat fenders, and artillery wheels with chrome hubcaps and wide whitewall tires.
“I’ve been lowriding since I was 16 years old,” reports 46-year-old Johnny Arevalo, a “heavy equipment operator” from Douglas, Arizona. “I’ve built several Impalas, including hoppers, and I finally decided to build a bomb.” Given his experience and connections, including membership in the Tucson, Arizona, chapter of Old Memories C.C., Johnny wanted the ’39 Chevy Master Deluxe that he bought from his friend Lupe Hoyes to be something special. “I went all out on this ’39 and it paid off,” he says.
Respecting the integrity and beauty of the old ’39, Johnny decided to keep the car “all original.” The masterfully restored “Mr. Magnifico” lives up to its moniker, and includes a multitude of period-perfect accessories, such as side air cooler, exhaust deflectors, headlight indicators, sun visor, fender skirts and fender guides. First Place trophies won at shows across the Southwest attest to Mr. Magnifico’s magnificence.
Now that the ’39 is looking so fine, Johnny’s returning his attention to the Impala generation and has a ’64 convertible in the making. Whatever he builds in the future, Johnny knows that it will be difficult to top this ’39, and he plans on showing the black beauty for some time before considering it for retirement. “This bomb is my pride and joy, next to my family,” he concludes. “I’ll see you at the shows.”
Mr. MagnificoOwner: Johnny ArevaloVehicle: ’39 Chevrolet Master DeluxeCity/State: Douglas, ArizonaClub: Old Memories C.C.-Tucson
Engine/Drivetrain: The original 216-c.i.d. engine was cleaned up and fine tuned with a split manifold, dual rear tailpipes and three-speed transmission.
Body/Paint: The original black paint was color sanded and subtle pinstriping was added by “Huero.”
Interior: That’s original mohair in there.
Sound System: None
Suspension: Chevy Classics in Tucson brought the car down to a more modern ride height with lowering springs.
Tires: 5.60 Firestone wide whitewalls
Wheels: 15-inch artillery